Apr ’18 – Two From The Vault – The Illustrated Man

Posted: April 21st, 2018 | Author: | Filed under: From The Vault | No Comments »

Has it come to this? Yep, we’re deep into clearing out the hard disk drive territory, and so begins an (occasional) series of blogs “From The Vault” featuring unpublished and unseen odds and sods – it’s mostly sods, to be honest! – from Agent Rob‘s ramshackle digital archives. To kick things off we have two variations on Ray Bradbury‘s The Illustrated Man* as intended for entry into the Barbican‘s ‘Into The Unknown: A Journey through Science Fiction‘ 2017 competition. A mixture of it being craply drawn – the idea of a body covered in countless tattooed staring eyes with those that are real, those that should be visible in the head, obscured is moderately inspired – then subject to endless ‘digital toil’ (AKA polishing the turd) and finally missing the deadline (it was 6pm and not midnight as assumed) all contributed to its lack of, er, anything….

The figure and his tattoos were two separate inked drawings, the latter digitally dropped in under the former after scanning, and the background and lettering – easily the best thing about this – were then added digitally (and doubtless subject to much further tweaking). I’ll confess that I whole (and half-) heartedly regret mentioning the idea for this competition entry to a friend and that his obvious enthusiasm for its realistation, and evident disappointment at its actual materialisation as presented to him, pretty much killed off any remaining feelings of confidence in the piece. Still, can you imagine (as I did then and still do) if Frank Quitely had drawn this? Geez, it’d be amazing! Anyway, the five excellent (vastly superior and very deserving) winners can be seen here….

*Incidentally, the book itself contains maybe the finest short story ever written, ‘The Long Rain‘….

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